Saturday, July 27, 2013

*Warning*-- This is a heavily "finger quotes" sort of post---oh and it is sort of heavy in general...

I feel like I should preface this blog post with the fact that
 1.) I don't often write this openly about my spirituality or how I have come to this place. This feels risky
{and a bit scary}
but I have some "blogging it out" to do...
 2.) I often refer to myself as a "Recovering Christian" who is in the midst of healing from Charismatic/Evangelical Christian (C/EC) practices that are currently 
layered and chaotic in my soul.
3.) I feel like I have evolved from many of the practices that my "former self" participated in and I feel like I am continuing to do so.
4.) I am fairly confident that I will offend people with this and I am equally confident that I don't care. My spiritual journey has become, more than ever, tangible and true to the real me and who I am in this world.
5.) I'm pretty sure there isn't really a picture that fits this subject, so welcome to my first ever blog post without a picture.

When I read the first part of this blog on the "old school" {is it???} Evangelical Christian way of "finding a mate" I found myself relating and snickering at the absurdity of these practices.
 Particularly this part:

Do you remember those awesome Evangelical 90’s/ early 2000’s where Jesus was kind of like our boyfriend and we all kissed dating good-bye because we just knew that God was going to bring us THE ONE and then life would be awesome? And THE ONE would most likely be a worship minister, or at the very least a youth pastor, and we would have to be in college when we would meet at some sort of rally to save children from disease or something. We would know that he was THE ONE because of his plethora of WWJD bracelets and because (duh) he had also kissed dating goodbye and was waiting for me, strumming Chris Tomlin songs on his guitar as he stared into whatever campfire was nearby. We would get married and it would be awesome FOREVER. If you were like me, in devote preparation for this moment, you wrote letters to your future spouse, preferably in a leather bound journal dotted with your overwhelmed tears. Yes, I actually did that. 

Yes, I actually did that....too....
Oy Vey.
She goes on to say this:
I found this journal over Christmas break and it was so embarrassingly awful and emotional that I couldn't even read it out-loud to James because
 I was crying from laughing so hard.

When I read this last part, I realized that I don't think that my reaction of reading my journals would have been crying from laughter--I would have just cried.
 I would have been crying because I have a feeling of being deeply betrayed.
I am positive that I will not be able to express all of the many different feelings/thoughts/emotions that I have right now, but one leading emotion is 
 anger that I was duped.
 I learned, the hard way, that this sort of "faith" is not realistic.
 This sort of "faith" is manipulative and selfish. 
This sort of "faith" is plain ole silly.
{The blogger in the post I read agrees with this, which I really, really appreciate!}

I felt a sense of  recognizing a wound of sorts that has never been tended to. 
I poured my heart and soul into this type of thinking and was OBSESSED with "doing the right things" in order to "find THE ONE" and when it didn't happen 
"as planned"
it left  me with a lot of questions and a lot of opinions about what to believe and
 how to believe it.
And it left me wounded.
Some of the hurt lies in the fact that I don't remember anyone telling me that
 life might not go that route...
No one told me the Truth that there is really nothing I can "do" to "find" "THE ONE". 
 {So many "finger quotes", so little time...}

The blog I read recognized the ridiculousness of this sort of  C/EC practice and it focuses on the idea that there's no such thing as THE ONE and that the idea of a Soul Mate is Hollywood-esque and not real life. 
While I appreciate her angle, I was stuck on the fact that the practices she described weren't
Hollywood-esque to me {Or to the whole of C/EC's!}
They were who I was. 
They defined me. 
They were my blueprint to a God-Centered fulfilled life. 
And I was duped.

As the years marched on and my journals became thicker and thicker with pleas, hopes and offerings of sacrifice, I fought to see that this sort of thinking/praying/faith is  
not based on how life really unfolds. 
Yet, I was told that this is what God wanted from me and that
 there is certainly no room for 
 or the Universe,
 or Happenstance, 
or Dumb Luck, 
or Networking,
I just had to trust and believe that what I was "doing" was enough. 

And now, I believe that God doesn't work that way. He couldn't! 
Life is way too complicated and unpredictable.
I don't think "faith" is as black and white as I was told it was. I think the idea of mystery, on a practical level, not a mystical level, is taboo for some C/EC's!
But what I can't figure out, and what still makes me sad is that I am not writing about some ancient belief. There are many, many people who think "faith" works like this. 


For me, I am finding spiritual freedom like never before because I have reactions 
like this to blog posts like that. 
It might not seem like it, but I feel energized to be working through some of this stuff and finding myself  "outside of the {Christian} box".

There are a million other things I could blog about on this but I won't.
At least for now. 


  1. It's really interesting to read your blog post along side of Hannah's post about the same theme! What I love about both of them is the acknowledgement that spirituality--whether it take a "Christian" format or not--is a lifelong process of discovery. Each step along the way, you "evolve" into a new self, and that is the miracle here! LOVE this!

  2. I really have to say that I am having a hard time with all the Christian beliefs here in America. There are so many things that I don't know from the desperate search for "the one". Some people really seem to be obsessed with it and it's kind of strange for me...

  3. i think Cheryl said it way better than me. Although I will say...I'm so thankful for your honesty and openness through the process.